Yale Humanist Community
760 Chapel Street
New Haven CT 06510-3104
Contact Information
Address 760 Chapel Street
New Haven, CT 06510-3104
Telephone (203) 900-7942 x
E-mail yale.humanists@gmail.com
Web and Social Media
Mission

The Yale Humanist Community (YHC) strives to provide people with access to a caring community, support in moments of crisis, reflection on life’s big questions, a means for humanizing relationships with other faith or moral communities, and opportunities to act on their values.

A Great OpportunityHelpThe nonprofit has used this field to provide information about a special campaign, project or event that they are raising funds for now.
The Green Light Project is an effort to bring a new public art sculpture to the Greater New Haven Community.  It is a nine sided obelisk, in a nod to the nine original squares of New Haven Colony, with each side depicting a meaningful image of our vibrant, diverse community that also align with core values of humanism, some of which include living life ethically, caring about the environment and respect for others.  Permission to seasonally display the obelisk each year on the New Haven Green has been obtained and we are in the final stages of completing the project.  Funding is still needed to complete it, and to fund the endowment to display and maintain it going forward. Go to www.glpnh.com for more information.
A Great Opportunity Ending Date Dec 2017
At A Glance
Year of Incorporation 2014
Organization's type of tax exempt status Public Supported Charity
Organization received a competitive grant from the community foundation in the past five years No
Leadership
CEO/Executive Director Mr. Christopher Stedman
Board Chair Ms. Kathleen Green
Board Chair Company Affiliation New York Theological Seminary
Financial Summary
 
Projected Revenue $296,408.00
Projected Expenses $296,334.00
Statements
Mission

The Yale Humanist Community (YHC) strives to provide people with access to a caring community, support in moments of crisis, reflection on life’s big questions, a means for humanizing relationships with other faith or moral communities, and opportunities to act on their values.

Background

The Yale Humanist Community (YHC) started working on this mission in the Fall semester of 2012 when it was founded by Miles Lasater and Paul Chiariello. We are recognized as a chapter of the  American Humanist Association  and the  Humanist Unitarian Universalist Association.  Locally we are a member group of the Connecticut Coalition of Reason. At Yale, Chris Stedman, our Coordinator for Humanist Life and Executive Director, is a Fellow of  Silliman College  and YHC is a Community Agency member of  Dwight Hall.  We serve the students of Yale University and residents in the Greater New Haven community at large.

Impact
YHC instituted Humanist Haven, a semi-monthly community gathering of individuals interested in exploring ethical issues and finding camaraderie with others seeking to bridge interfaith issues and promote community service and social justice.
 
We offer weekly SMART Recovery group meetings for people struggling with addictive behaviors in downtown New Haven, where all are welcome. SMART is a non-theistic alternative to twelve step programs.
 
YHC hosts prominent speakers from across the nation to address issues on ethics and living a meaningful life for good.
 
A goal for this year is to complete and unveil "Lighthouse" by Edwin Salmon, the nine sided obelisk depicting humanist values that are portrayed every day in our vibrant, diverse community that is Greater New Haven.  This overall endeavor is called the Green Light Project and includes starting a modest endowment to display and maintain the obelisk going forward.  Go to www.glpnh.com for more information.
Needs
YHC is in need of expanded staffing to sustain existing and new community outreach programs. Currently, all programs are supported by two part-time staff people, and volunteers. The program activities include Humanist Haven, SMART Recovery, Existential Counseling, Interfaith Community Service Projects, Speaker Events, Graduate and Undergraduate Student Programs, and support for the mentally ill and homeless. Additionally, staff manages all the business and regulatory requirements for YHC. The need for a Program Director is vital for sustainability of existing programs at the activity level achieved thus far. Funds to support a full time Program Director position including employment related expenses such as workers compensation insurance, employer taxes and employee benefits are approximately $55,000 per year.
 
YHC is in need of technology equipment and software for approximately $5,000.
 
YHC's Green Light Project bringing a sculpture depicting the best of community to the New Haven Green seasonally. This symbol would represent Humanism in its finest form of inspiring people to live and to do good works for the sake of good. There is an ongoing need of several thousand dollars per year for storage, maintenance and seasonal display expenses.
CEO Statement
When I was an undergraduate student, I realized I was not religious—but while my religious peers had chaplains and communities, I felt like I couldn't talk to anyone about my changing beliefs. I felt disconnected and without a community.
 
I think about that isolating feeling today whenever I meet with a community member in my role as Yale Humanist Community’s Executive Director and Coordinator of Humanist Life, and it reminds me how important it is that all people have access to resources and a caring community.
 
As a relatively new organization, I have been surprised by just how many people in New Haven have already come to us seeking resources. But if you've been paying attention to demographic shifts, perhaps this immediate interest won't surprise you. Today, more and more Americans—particularly those under the age of 30—say they’re not religious. As people debate why this is, I think there's a more pressing question: Where are the religiously unaffiliated finding community, connection, support, and inspiration?
 
YHC exists to help people connect with others, find support in moments of crisis, consider life’s big questions, develop humanizing relationships with other faith or moral communities, and find opportunities to act on their values.
 
But the ramifications of our work extend beyond individual benefits. In American Grace, social scientists Robert Putnam and David Campbell report that religious Americans are much more charitable and more civically engaged than nonreligious Americans—in the words of Putnam and Campbell, religious Americans are “better neighbors.” But they also report that a nonbelieving spouse of a religious person who participates in her or his partner’s religious community is just as civically engaged as the believing partner.
 
Because of this, Putnam and Campbell suggest that the correlation between religiosity and civic engagement isn’t about belief; it’s about belonging to a community that inspires you to reflect on what matters to you and provides opportunities to act on your values. Thus, Putnam and Campbell speculate that communities for Humanists could serve a similar function in equipping religiously unaffiliated people to be more civically engaged. So communities like ours are important—both for individuals and for the common good.
 
As a new, small, and rapidly growing organization, this is a critical moment for YHC. With just one full time staff member, we have been able to do a lot with a little. But we can't do anything more without your help. Please dig deep and donate to support us in building a diverse Humanist community.
Board Chair Statement
From our co-founder Miles Lasater:
YHC is an independent nonprofit that relies on donations to do our work. We receive no monetary support from Yale University.

YHC provides a unique safe space for Humanists, atheists, agnostics, and the nonreligious to build community.
 
Personally, I wish YHC had existed when I was a student. Now, being a father of three, I think it is critical for our children to grow up in a community with these kind of shared values and rituals. I invite you to think about why YHC may be important to you or your neighbor.
Service Categories
Primary Organization Category Arts,Culture & Humanities / Humanities
Secondary Organization Category Religion- Related / Interfaith Coalitions
Tertiary Organization Category Unknown /
Areas Served
Ansonia
Bethany
Branford
Cheshire
East Haven
Guilford
Hamden
Lower Naugatuck Valley
Milford
New Haven
North Branford
North Haven
Seymour
Shelton
Shoreline
West Haven
Woodbridge
Other
Programs
Description Semi-monthly interactive lecture series focused on living ethically, compassionately and well.  National speakers present on subjects including "Art As Social Justice," "How To Embrace Radical Difference," "How To Approach Death," and "How To Be Authentic," and many more "How To Be Human" topics.  Lectures are followed by small group conversation where attendees can connect with one another through exploration and sharing of their unique perspectives in a safe space.

Population Served Adults / Families /
Program is linked to organization’s mission and strategy Yes
Program is frequently assessed based on predetermined program goals Yes
Short Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe near term achievement(s) or improvement(s) that will result from this program. This may represent immediate outcomes occurring as a result of the end of a session or service. At the end of each themed year, 2016-2017 is "How To Be Human," attendees will have a deeper appreciation of others and knowledge for coping with challenges that life can present.
Long Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe the ultimate change(s) that will result from this program. This may be far into the future and represent an ideal state. Increased understanding between people from all walks of life and all philosophical beliefs.
Program Success Monitored ByHelpOrganizations describe the tools used to measure or track program impact. Attendance to the lectures continues to grow in general and especially from repeat attendees.
Examples of Program SuccessHelpOrganization's site specific examples of changes in clients' behaviors or testimonies of client's changes to demonstrate program success. Some events are standing room only and more often than not a larger space must be booked than originally anticipated.
Description Can a nonreligious person follow Jesus? Muhammad? Buddha? What about Gandhi… or Darwin? In the pantheon of great thinkers, prophets, writers, scientists, artists, and leaders, to whom do you turn for inspiration, motivation, meaning, and ethical guidance? How do you implement their lessons in your life? Do you follow their examples?

The Yale Humanist Community invites you to join WTF (Who to Follow?), a discussion group exploring these matters the fourth Tuesday of every month at 7 PM at The Grove (760 Chapel Street). These discussions are hosted by Tom Krattenmaker, religion-in-public-life columnist for USA Today, author, and Communications Director at Yale Divinity School. Tom is currently writing a book exploring what it could mean to be a “secular Jesus follower.”

Population Served Adults / /
Program is linked to organization’s mission and strategy Yes
Program is frequently assessed based on predetermined program goals Yes
Long Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe the ultimate change(s) that will result from this program. This may be far into the future and represent an ideal state. This discussion group is a bridging activity that allows participants from all walks of life to find common ground in the ethics of living.
Program Success Monitored ByHelpOrganizations describe the tools used to measure or track program impact. Discussion leader and Executive Director.
Description YHC hosts a weekly SMART Recovery support group meeting every Monday at 6:30 PM in the Conservatory room at The Grove (760 Chapel Street, New Haven, CT 06510) for those struggling with addictive behaviors. The goal of SMART, which stands for Self-Management and Recovery Training, is to provide quality, science-based educational tools and community for individuals struggling with addictive behaviors—and a nontheistic alternative to twelve-step programs, which rely heavily on God and Christian theology. People of all faiths and beliefs are welcome to attend.
Population Served Adults / /
Program is linked to organization’s mission and strategy Yes
Program is frequently assessed based on predetermined program goals Yes
Long Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe the ultimate change(s) that will result from this program. This may be far into the future and represent an ideal state. Like AA and similar programs, this is an open, self guided opportunity for people struggling with addictive behaviors to make life-lasting behavior changes with ongoing group support.
Description
As Humanism is a worldview without dogma, doctrine, or guiding holy books, it all comes down to us. But that isn’t always easy.
 
How can we live fulfilling lives? Who are we and what do we want to become? How can we be good people, and what is good in the first place? How can we be happy? How can we make the world around us a better place, and is this actually our responsibility? How do we respond to tragedy, experience joy and wonder, and deal with the difficulties and rewards of everyday life?

In the Practical Humanism Discussion Group, we explore these questions. Participants are challenged to reflect upon their personal beliefs, their values, and their worldview. We want to help people to get to know who they are and what they stand for. In an accepting and open atmosphere we discuss, reflect, and explore.

 
Community members can also set up one-on-one counseling with experienced counselors throughout the week by appointment or during open counseling office hours.
Population Served Adults / /
Program is linked to organization’s mission and strategy Yes
Program is frequently assessed based on predetermined program goals Yes
Program Success Monitored ByHelpOrganizations describe the tools used to measure or track program impact. Executive Director and individual counselors.
Examples of Program SuccessHelpOrganization's site specific examples of changes in clients' behaviors or testimonies of client's changes to demonstrate program success. Suicide prevention, LGBTQ discrimination and prejudice prevention, grief counseling, anxiety issues, marriage counseling, and all other issues that arise in the course of daily life.
Description The Green Light Project was originally conceived when an atheist Humanist was enjoying the Christmas and Hanukkah displays on the New Haven Green and it occurred to him that wouldn't it be wonderful if all humanity could not just be wished the goodwill of the season, but be represented in the spirit of light, warmth and hope on the New Haven Green.  To that end, YHC launched a campaign to raise funds to create a public art sculpture that depicts scenes of the best of the New Haven Community including its surrounding natural beauty and especially every day acts of kindness.  These scenes inherently depict the essence of Humanism as well.  This interactive, lighted sculpture is intended to be displayed seasonally and complement the other displays on the New Haven Green.  The Green Light Project is from the community, for the community and about the community.  It is inclusive of everyone.
Population Served General/Unspecified / /
Program is linked to organization’s mission and strategy Yes
Program is frequently assessed based on predetermined program goals Yes
Short Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe near term achievement(s) or improvement(s) that will result from this program. This may represent immediate outcomes occurring as a result of the end of a session or service.
Phase One - Completion of the physical.
Phase Two - Interactive lighting of the sculpture.
Phase three - Annual display of the sculpture.
It's possible that the unlit sculpture will go on display as funds are raised for the lighting, which can be added later.
It's possible that if funds are limited that the sculpture may not go on display in any given year.
Long Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe the ultimate change(s) that will result from this program. This may be far into the future and represent an ideal state. The program's success is determined year after year when it is on display on the New Haven Green.  The artist is completing the work and the inaugural display is expected in winter 2017.  Each year it will cost approximately $4,000 to store, put-up, take-down and light.  This is an on-going expense in addition to creating the original sculpture.  Long-term success will be raising the annual costs or building an endowment to support the annual display.
Examples of Program SuccessHelpOrganization's site specific examples of changes in clients' behaviors or testimonies of client's changes to demonstrate program success. To date we have obtained permission from the Proprietors of the Commons and Undivided Lands and the City of New Haven to put the sculpture on display.  An artist has been chosen.  Engineering reports and architectural designs have been completed.  In excess of $20,000 has been raised as of 2017 toward the project.
CEO/Executive Director
Mr. Christopher Stedman
Term Start Aug 2014
Email cdstedman@gmail.com
Experience Chris is the author of Faitheist: How an Atheist Found Common Ground with the Religious (Beacon Press/Random House), “an intimate and deeply affecting portrait… [that] proves [he is] an activist in the truest sense and one to watch” (Booklist, Starred Review).

Previously the Assistant Humanist Chaplain at Harvard University and the Values 
in Action Coordinator for the Humanist Community at Harvard (where he was previously
 the inaugural Interfaith and Community Service Fellow), and a Content Developer and Adjunct Trainer for Interfaith Youth Core, where he helped shape their ongoing collaboration with the Obama administration, Chris is a prolific author whose work regularly appears in Salon, CNN, msnbc, The Huffington Post, The Washington Post 
On Faith, and more.


He brings a decade of experience as a community organizer to YHC. As a young adult, he worked for Minnesota’s St. Paul Public School District, helping to coordinate their Gay-Straight Alliances and drop-in center for at-risk LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer) teenagers. Later, he ran an after school education program for at-risk youth on the South Side of Chicago, providing a safe space and resources for youth living in the neighborhood with the highest rate of violent crime in the United States. He has spent the last six years coordinating and executing programming for college and university students and local Humanist communities.

Chris received an MA in Religion from Meadville 
Lombard Theological School at the University of 
Chicago (with dual concentrations in Pastoral Care & Counseling and Religion & the Arts), for which he was awarded the Billings Prize
 for Most Outstanding Scholastic Achievement. A 
graduate of Augsburg College with a summa cum laude
 B.A. in Religion, Chris is an official advisor to Humanist charitable organization Foundation
 Beyond Belief's Challenge the Gap initiative, as well as their new Pathfinders Project program.

Staff
Number of Full Time Staff 1
Number of Part Time Staff 1
Number of Volunteers 15
Number of Contract Staff 0
Staff Retention Rate 100%
Staff Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 2
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0 0
Staff Demographics - Gender
Male 1
Female 1
Unspecified 0
Senior Staff
Title Director of Operations
Experience/Biography Nancy Kelly has been in business management for more than thirty years holding executive positions including VP of Operations for Marathon Entertainment, a fifty-two store retail chain serving Northern California and Nevada; Controller for Finet Mortgage Corporation, a billion dollar financial organization headquartered in San Francisco and trading on the NASDAQ; and VP Fin/Adm for the Peterson Group, an advertising agency in Newport Beach, CA serving Fortune 200 clients, major charities and the movie industry. She also served on the Board of Directors of Direct Financial Lending Group, a private lending firm until moving from Newport Beach to New Haven, CT in 2008.

Her philanthropic commitments included chairing the Balboa Island Day Parade for the City of Newport Beach, Board of Directors for Voyagers Yacht Club, President of the Balboa Island Business Association, Board of Directors for the Assistance League of Newport-Mesa (ALNM) supporting the largest dental clinic for underprivileged children in Orange County, CA, and Chair of the ALNM Medallion Ball held at the Balboa Bay Club in Newport Beach.

Her service to the arts and for humanitarian issues continued in Connecticut with involvement at New Life Corporation providing free tax preparation services and financial counseling for poverty and low-income families, business management support on behalf of the New Haven Ballet, and ongoing support for several orchestras and choirs throughout the region.

Formal Evaluations
CEO Formal Evaluation Yes
CEO/Executive Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Board Chair
Ms. Kathleen Green
Company Affiliation New York Theological Seminary
Term Jan 2017 to Dec 2017
Board of Directors
NameAffiliation
Mr. Vlad Chituc Community Volunteer
Mr. Adam Garner DoSomething.org
Mr. Tom Krattenmaker Yale University
Mr. Chris Kriesen Gordon, Muir & Foley
Mr. Ike Lasater Mediate Your Life
Mr. Miles Lasater
Dean April Ruiz Yale University
Mr. Chris Stedman Yale Humanist Community
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 8
Hispanic/Latino 1
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0 0
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 7
Female 2
Unspecified 0
 
 
Financials
Fiscal Year Start July 01 2016
Fiscal Year End June 30 2017
Projected Revenue $296,408.00
Projected Expenses $296,334.00
Spending Policy N/A
Credit Line No
Reserve Fund No
Detailed Financials
Prior Three Years Expense Allocations Chart
Fiscal Year201620152014
Program Expense$106,581$94,980$12,739
Administration Expense$29,672$14,948$3,641
Fundraising Expense------
Payments to Affiliates------
Total Revenue/Total Expenses1.261.041.12
Program Expense/Total Expenses78%86%78%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue0%0%0%
Prior Three Years Assets and Liabilities Chart
Fiscal Year201620152014
Total Assets$45,552$8,520$3,145
Current Assets$29,559$8,520$3,145
Long-Term Liabilities------
Current Liabilities$2,923$750$56
Total Net Assets$42,629$7,770$3,089
Prior Three Years Top Three Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201620152014
Top Funding Source & Dollar AmountIFYC $1,575 -- --
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountIFA&I $500 -- --
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar Amount -- -- --
Solvency
Short Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201620152014
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities10.1111.3656.16
Long Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201620152014
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets0%0%0%
Capitial Campaign
Currently in a Capital Campaign? Yes
Goal $50,600.00
Dates Apr 2015 to Dec 2017
Amount Raised To Date 32173 as of Mar 2017
Capital Campaign Anticipated in Next 5 Years? No
Comments
CEO Comments YHC is in its fourth year of existence. General operating funds as well as program funding remain the organization's biggest fundraising needs.
Foundation Staff Comments

This profile, including the financial summaries prepared and submitted by the organization based on its own independent and/or internal audit processes and regulatory submissions, has been read by The Community Foundation.  Financial information is input by Foundation staff directly from the organization’s IRS Form 990, audited financial statements or other financial documents approved by the nonprofit’s board. The Foundation has not audited the organization’s financial statements or tax filings, and makes no representations or warranties thereon. The Community Foundation requires three years of financial information from the nonprofit organization; however, this requirement may not be available for some organizations due to their more recent incorporation or formation. The Community Foundation is continuing to receive information submitted by the organization and may periodically update the organization’s profile to reflect the most current financial and other information available. The organization has completed the fields required by The Community Foundation and updated their profile in the last year. To see if the organization has received a competitive grant from The Community Foundation in the last five years, please go to the General Information Tab of the profile.

 

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